Ericsson and Telstra (Australia) have announce their agreement to join forces and collaborate on the development of 5G standards and technologies.
An early adopter of LTE (launched September 2011), Telstra works with its network partner Ericsson to deliver ongoing network innovation, most recently with LTE-Advanced.
Building on the successful partnership between Telstra and Ericsson, the 5G collaboration will ensure that evolving industry standards and Ericsson’s 5G solutions reflect the needs of advanced mobile network operators.
Mike Wright, Group Managing Director Networks, Telstra, says: “While a 5G world is some time away, it is important to begin key foundational work now to help us to better understand this emerging new technology and what it can do for customers across Australia and the world. For Telstra, 5G will be an evolution of our world leading 4G network, and we are keen to work together with our network partner Ericsson to drive the standards, test new concepts and research the new architectures.”
Areas of collaboration include the following:
•3GPP Standards: Telstra and Ericsson standards teams will work closely together to ensure the evolving standards capture the requirements of advanced operators such as Telstra.
•5G Radio Test Bed: Telstra staff will join Ericsson in their advanced technology facilities in Sweden later this year to test and analyze the latest innovations from Ericsson’s world leading researchers.
•5G Field Trial: Telstra will run a 5G field trial in Australia which will include opportunities for Telstra’s industry partners and customers to experience the potential of 5G.
•MTC: Telstra and Ericsson will run a PoC (Proof of Concept) for MTC (Machine Type Communications, 3GPP Release 13) with Telstra and selected industry partners. MTC is a key enabler of the Internet of Things (IoT) where current device limitations such as range, battery life and size can be significantly improved to allow almost anything to be connected to the network.
•Core Network Evolution: For 5G to be an end-to-end network reality, the mobile core network will need to evolve to support the new services. To facilitate understanding in this area, Telstra and Ericsson will collaborate to investigate and demonstrate key capabilities for a 5G ready evolved core network using the Ericsson Cloud System, Router 6000 series, Evolved Packet Core, SDN controller, IMS and other core elements.
The collaboration activities will commence in the second quarter of 2015 and continue to evolve as the standards mature and 5G becomes a commercial network reality around the 2020 timeframe.
Håkan Eriksson, Head of Ericsson Australia, New Zealand and Fiji, says: “Delivering the benefits of 5G requires an end-to-end approach that includes devices, RAN and core networks. The 5G collaboration with Telstra will deepen our understanding of latest innovations, architectures and use cases important to 5G. It also presents an opportunity to understand how Machine Type Communications (MTC) a key component of 5G can transform many industries including utilities, mining, logistics and agriculture to mention but a few.”
“Ericsson has worked closely with Telstra to trial and introduce many advanced radio and core technologies such as LTE Advanced and LTE Broadcast. Our collaboration and partnership on 5G is another key area of innovation.”
Telstra deploys Ericsson LTE broadcast to enable video-centric applications
Close on the heels of a series of successful trials in 2014, Telstra will deploy Ericsson’s LTE Broadcast end-to-end solution on their Australian 4GX network. With this capability in place Telstra will be progressively enabling permanent LTE Broadcast channels at key venues and major events, initially for testing and then for customer access on compatible devices during 2015.
The LTE Broadcast trials run by Telstra and Ericsson in Australia have shown that three or four channels of video can be efficiently streamed along with complementary data channels. This traffic used as little as 10% of the 20 MHz carrier to cover all users. The adoption of High-Efficiency Video Coding (HEVC) compression further improves network efficiency and potential picture quality.
Mike Wright, Telstra Group Managing Director Networks, says: “We have completed a number of successful LTE Broadcast trials and seen firsthand the benefits to our network and how it enhances the delivery of high quality content during large scale events. We are now excited about the possibilities it will provide once the capability is deployed across our network.”
In late February 2015, Ericsson and Telstra demonstrated LTE Broadcast transmission using HEVC encoders. HEVC encoding reduces the bandwidth required to deliver high quality video by around 30-40%, compared with existing MPEG-4 AVC coding, enabling operators to either deliver higher quality video or more channels in the same spectrum.
LTE Broadcast has a number of potential key use cases including new customer content experiences at sporting events, such as tennis, cricket, horse racing, car racing and other special events. Using the technology, event goers will be able to access multiple high quality video streams and event related data.
Håkan Eriksson, Head of Ericsson Australia, New Zealand and Fiji says: “Operators are selecting LTE Broadcast for its efficient spectrum use, chipset support in many smartphones and the potential to develop and deliver new personalized media services to consumers and upstream media and industry customers. In addition to delivering high quality video, LTE Broadcast can also be used to deliver personalized media content, such as digital advertising, digital newspaper updates and operating system updates.”
At MWC Ericsson is demonstrating a number of use cases, including: Public Safety Mission Critical Push to Talk service, Software/File downloads and LTE Broadcast to Set-Top Box. New functionality, such as Dynamic Switching between unicast and broadcast, and growing ecosystem of commercial devices, dongles, are also showcased.